Tesla Motors has brought in another Daimler AG executive to its board of directors – Harald Kroeger, Daimler's vice president of electrics, electronics and e-Drive. Kroeger replaces Daimler's Herbert Koehler, who resigned from the Tesla board on December 12.

Koehler had been a board member since Daimler invested in the company in 2009. As Tesla CEO Elon Musk told us earlier this year, Tesla received a $50-million investment at a much-needed time in the electric carmaker's history. As Musk said, "thankfully, Daimler, with whom we had a small deal to produce battery packs for the Smart [ED] actually invested $50 million into Tesla in the nick of time. It wasn't some huge altruistic gesture, but nonetheless, they had to have faith that their $50 million wouldn't go down the drain."

Other than battery packs for the Smart electric drive, Tesla hasn't yet announced signing another contract with Daimler similar to Tesla's alliance with Toyota on its RAV4 EV's electric powertrain system. Tesla will also make a powertrain for the B-Class E-Cell, but details are sparse on that. Musk did say that "it's a big program, it's not a marketing or a demonstration program. It is a serious, high-volume program." In a recent public regulatory filing, Tesla stated that the board change is the "result of a natural transition of responsibilities at Daimler AG with respect to the development of electric vehicle powertrains."

Tesla's financial sheet is getting better, as Tesla announced being cash flow positive earlier this month, and that profits may be earned next year through sales of its Model S. Musk also seems to be doing well – he's described in the Automotive News article as "billionaire Elon Musk." Along with his role at SpaceX, Musk is chairman of home solar panel-installer SolarCity, and still finds time to oversee luxury electric carmaker Tesla Motors.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      purrpullberra
      • 2 Years Ago
      Is being this close to Daimler good or bad for Tesla? Is it possible that Tesla won't hire an executive because they are from BMW or Audi? Perhaps some remnant of conflict that isn't really possible, with Japanese companies, with the current level of Toyota involvement? Daimler has MANY detractors too. If I did find it necessary to jump into bed with them out of sheer desperation I'd be thankful but I'd try to not get effing married! Or is the partnering up with Daimler and Toyota helping ease the fears that most of the rest of the auto industry feels? Too many political sides are at work here to know for sure but.... Damn. Daimler? Still?! They aren't even the best Germans! ;) Merry ModelX-mas!
      Grendal
      • 2 Years Ago
      Reservation #16,384 was made yesterday. European reservation #2030 was made in Norway today.
      Grendal
      • 2 Years Ago
      As far as I'm aware, Daimler has sold 40% of its stock in Tesla. Yes they did: http://www.plugincars.com/daimler-reduces-stake-tesla-motors-40-percent-123080.html The article says that they are still the third largest investor in Tesla. That would be if they haven't sold any more.
        Grendal
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Grendal
        And recently they sold another 7.5% of what they had left. Daimler has definitely made a nice little profit on their Tesla investment.
          Grendal
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Grendal
          Thanks for the correction. I just knew they owned a good chunk of the company and was trying to impart that information - incorrectly it seems.
          Grendal
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Grendal
          True, but Daimler is/was controlled by a Saudi water company that sold off a block to another Saudi company that had their own projects that they wanted to use the money for. In many ways it had nothing whatsoever to do with Tesla as a company.
          Ashton
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Grendal
          I think they could have made a larger profit though if they held on to for several more years...
          Marcopolo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Grendal
          @ Grendal, 'Controlled' is not really accurate. Although a large shareholder, Arabian interests so not own a majority of the shares in Daimler , nor do they control the board of directors.
      fly by wireless
      • 2 Years Ago
      Careful, Tesla, snake with the 3 point star on its hood will bite you if it gets the chance.
      EZEE
      • 2 Years Ago
      Cool. Looks like tesla got a guy with knowledge and experience.